Image: Wayne Bund
Mariano Pensotti at the Works on Thursday night

A pair of people in white shirts has gathered.

I scan the courtyard. I see no such gathering. I look down. I’m wearing a white shirt. I look to my left. So is the guy next to me. Well, that’s awkward.

The woman is young enough to be called a girl. Except for the way she holds her shoulders. The way she holds her shoulders makes it clear her girlhood has passed.

Well played, ma’am. True on all counts.

Do you ever wonder what people think when they see you? The stories they make up inside their heads about your life? The things they don’t make up? What do you imagine about them?

Mariano Pensotti: Sometimes I think, I can see you
PSU Urban Center Plaza
Thru Sun, Sept 22
11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
In an extreme act of people watching and observation, a group of authors takes turns in the PSU Urban Center Plaza to narrate the lives of passersby in Mariano Pensotti’s Sometimes I Think I Can See You.

The idea, perhaps, is better than the execution. An author sits at a table with a laptop while a screen sits across the way, projecting the musings. The placement of the screens, however, makes it difficult to sit and observe, and the location of the event wasn’t one I would have chosen if in the mood to people watch. Yet the longer I sit watching, the more I appreciate the vacancy, the passing.

How strong is your ability not to take things personally? I want you to take this personally that I’m writing at you. That’s what it’s like, sitting here. Every person has the potential to be a person, but then they’re not there anymore.

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